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Hi, I thought it was about time I put something down, first let me tell you a bit about myself. I was born in Doncaster, in 1965. I have one sister, Sharon, who still lives in the house we grew up in. I never knew my real father and was raised by my mother, Betty, and step-father, Alan who we sadly lost to cancer a couple of years ago. There was nothing unusual about my childhood, pretty normal in fact. My dad was in the air force and later SOAF, the Sultan of Oman's air force. I loved hearing his stories of far off lands, populated with fascinating people. A few stories stood out for me, guard duty in Aden, being on edge all the time; expecting an attack from insurgents at any moment, or the time he was riding shotgun on a bus full of school children which came under attack, one of the attackers threw a grenade at the open doorway where my dad was positioned, fortunately the grenade bounced off the edge of the door and blew up the attacker. Then there was the time when he was stationed at RAF Stanmore Park. When him and his mates used to drink at a local Pub, every now and again a group of men used to rock up at the Pub and always bought several rounds for the customers. They said they were property developers from London, it was not till two of the men appeared on the TV news that he discovered they were the infamous Kray Twins, Ronnie & Reggie. Tales like this seemed to fire my imagination from early on.
     At the bottom of our stairs resided at glass fronted book case, filled with Readers Digest novels, you know the kind I mean, three stories within, and bound in red, green or blue covers with gold writing. I was forbidden to touch these books, of course being the inquisitive kind, I found ways and means to check them out, and from then on I had the bug. I became a voracious reader, devouring all I could. I sometimes think I learned more from reading than I ever did in school.
     It wasn't until I won a short story competition in School that I harboured any notions of becoming a writer. I received a knock back in my Comprehensive years when I asked my English teacher, who bore a striking resemblance to the Character 'Tattoo' off Fantasy Island, advice on writing books. I was basically told to forget it and get a proper job. So there it was my dreams smashed before my eyes, I would not think about it again untill I was in my forties. To be continued.

 


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